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Excise 'scam': Delhi court denies bail to Manish Sisodia in money laundering case

The judge had reserved the order after hearing arguments on Sisodia's plea seeking relief claiming that his custody was no longer required for investigation

PTI New Delhi Published 28.04.23, 04:27 PM
Manish Sisodia

Manish Sisodia File picture

A Delhi court on Friday dismissed the bail application of AAP leader Manish Sisodia in a money laundering case related to the alleged excise policy scam, saying the evidence prima facie "speaks volumes of his involvement in commission of the offence".

Special Judge M K Nagpal denied the relief to Sisodia, saying that the prosecution was able to show a genuine and prima facie case for Sisodia's involvement in commission of the alleged offence of money laundering.


The court denied the relief noting the "serious nature of allegations made and role played by Sisodia in the criminal conspiracy, his connection with the activities relating to generation or acquisition and use etc. of the proceeds of crime...and the oral and documentary evidence collected in support of the same." "Hence, this court is not inclined to grant bail to the applicant in this case of economic offences having serious repercussions upon the general public and society at large as the evidence collected during investigation speaks volumes of his involvement in commission of the said offence," the judge said.

He said that alleged medical illness of Sisodia's wife was also not a ground to enlarge him on bail in this case.

The court further said that the possibility of Sisodia influencing prime witnesses of the case could not be ruled out.

The judge noted that the offence alleged against Sisodia was a “serious economic offence of money laundering” and he has not been accused of commission of the said offence in his individual capacity, but he has been alleged to have committed it in his official capacity of a public servant holding the charge or portfolio of Excise Ministry as well as being the Deputy Chief Minister of Delhi.

Again, the allegations made in the case are found to be serious from another angle too as huge proceeds of crime in crores of rupees are alleged to have been generated or processed through different activities, he said.

"The seriousness or gravity of the offence and its nature or category, the capacity of applicant in which was committed, the manner of its commission and also certain other factors like impact of the offence as well as the possible impact of release of applicant on society etc. Are the factors which go against the applicant and force this court to decide against his release on bail in the present case,” the judge said.

The judge said it emerged out from the evidence that Sisodia was connected with generation of proceeds of crime of around Rs 100 crore in the form of advance kickbacks, which were paid by the 'south-lobby' to co-accused Vijay Nair through co-accused Abhishek Boinpally, who had been participating in the meetings held with different conspirators and stakeholders in liquor business and the amount was received by him on behalf of Sisodia and his other political colleagues for extending undue pecuniary benefits to the conspirators and members of the cartel.

The judge noted that cartel was permitted to be formed by manipulation of some provisions of the excise policy and by insertion of some favourable clauses therein for the benefit of conspirators.

The judge had reserved the order after hearing arguments on Sisodia's plea seeking relief claiming that his custody was no longer required for investigation.

The Enforcement Directorate (ED) had opposed the application, asserting the investigation was at a "crucial" stage and claiming the senior AAP leader had planted fabricated e-mails to show there was public approval for the policy.

The federal agency also said it had found fresh evidence of his complicity in the alleged crime.

The court had on March 31 dismissed Sisodia's bail application in a corruption case, being probed by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI).

The CBI and the ED had arrested Sisodia for alleged corruption in the formulation and execution of the now-scrapped Delhi Excise Policy 2021-22 and for laundering the money so generated.

Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by The Telegraph Online staff and has been published from a syndicated feed.

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